GCLA Day On The Hill Ensures Operator Voices Are Heard

Lexi Tucker
Posted on March 4, 2020

Last year's Day on the Hill event was a mega success. The GCLA hopes to see as big a group at this year's event. (Photo: Robert Gaskill)

Last year's Day on the Hill event was a mega success. The GCLA hopes to see as big a group at this year's event. (Photo: Robert Gaskill)

The 2020 GCLA Day on the Hill lobbying event will take place March 11 from 8am to 5pm in Sacramento this coming week. Operator-members of the association split up into teams and visit the offices of state Senators and California State Assembly representatives. GCLA lobbyist Gregg Cook, who is based in Sacramento, arranges and schedules the visits.

GCLA board director and legislative co-director David Kinney urged operators at a recent meeting to sign up for the event, calling on the GCLA to triple the usual 30-35 number of people participating. “Legislators and regulators will listen to operators,” he said.

On the GCLA agenda this year is persuading the CPUC to spend part of $50 million in an account on more enforcement against illegal operators and administrative services for licensed operators, and lobby against attempts by TNCs to repeal or modify AB5.

Mark Stewart, a GCLA board director who leads the group’s legislative and regulatory affairs, said "Each year we get a little more strategic on what our speaking points are. We want to keep it very specific and bill related. It's vital to get members to participate so they can meet and speak with their local assembly member or senator, and going there with a clear message of what it is we are trying to accomplish with their support is key."

This will be Stewart's second time in his 25 years in the luxury transportation business that he will be attending Day on the Hill. "Last year was the first year I personally participated, and I was amazed by hearing what others had to say they gained from being a part of it." As the group did last year, they will be conducting two pre-training meetings to help everyone stay on track when meeting legislators. "We only have so many minutes to be in front of them, and we feel confident in our speaking points for this year."

Past Wins

The GCLA enjoyed some of its most successful years on the regulatory front in 2018 and 2019 with the passage of AB5, preserved curbside access for operators at LAX, and a drastic reduction in licensing fees operators pay to the California Public Utilities Commission.

Kinney underscored how such victories result from members’ direct involvement in the group’s annual Legislative Day at the Capitol in Sacramento, and support for the lobbying firm that represents the GCLA.

“This is a great opportunity to see how government works with business and offers you a chance to address complaints and challenges,” said Kinney. “It’s important to be engaged and influence the process.”

Next Meeting

Sara Eastwood-Richardson of RAS International

Sara Eastwood-Richardson of RAS International

At the next GCLA meeting, to be held March 25 at The Proud Bird in Los Angeles from 5:30pm to 9pm, the association's new Executive Director Sara Eastwood-Richardson will make her official debut. For 25 years, Sara ran the LCT brand including LCT Magazine, the International LCT Show, the LCT Leadership Summit, LCT East, and For the past 18 years, Sara was the head of the staffing contract between Bobit Business Media and the National Limousine Association where she oversaw operations and worked hand-in-hand with the NLA board of directors. She'll say a few things about her team and what members can expect from them in their role in bringing in new members, sponsors, and creative ideas for meetings.

Click here to sign up for the March 25 meeting

Joseph Lordan, Partner,Lewis, Brisbois, Bisgaard & Smith LLP in San Francisco, CA

Joseph Lordan, Partner,
Lewis, Brisbois, Bisgaard & Smith LLP in San Francisco, CA

The education portion of the event will be presented by Joseph Lordan from Lewis Brisbois Bisgaard & Smith who will educate attendees on the latest labor regulations related to AB5 and provide valuable information to help them overcome challenges of doing business in 2020. Mark Freeark from TIB Insurance will also present regarding the commercial insurance shakeup and skyrocketing rates to give attendees all the answers they need to make sure they are properly insured. 

Mark Freeark, Account Executive, TIB Transportation Insurance Brokers in Glendale, California

Mark Freeark, Account Executive, TIB Transportation Insurance Brokers in Glendale, California

"We are expecting a great turnout. After receiving many comments about what's been going on in the insurance side, we wanted to be sure we conducted a meeting that would be informative to our members. It's a conversation a lot of operators are having regardless of fleet size."

Stewart also said he felt the labor presentation conducted during the GCLA's recent Northern California meeting was effective and plans to have more of a Q&A heavy session to help answer any burning questions regarding labor laws.

Related Topics: California operators, California Public Utilities Commission, David Kinney, Day On the Hill, GCLA, Greater California Livery Association, Gregg Cook, industry regulations, legislation, limo associations, lobbying, Mark Stewart, regulations, regulatory enforcement, state regulations

Lexi Tucker Senior Editor
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